Fill 1 Created with Sketch. Exhibit The Nature Exchange

Step into the shoes of natural history researchers
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  • Are you a collector of unique looking sea shells? Or interesting rocks? What about strange looking insects or colourful flowers?

    Whatever your collection of choice may be, we invite you to trade your natural items at The Nature Exchange.

    The Nature Exchange is a beautiful new gallery where you can become natural history researchers, simply by exploring your own backyards! Visit the Trading Centre, where you can analyze, discuss, interpret and catalogue your natural item. Trade your item to earn points. The more information you learn about your item, the more points you can earn!

    Once you’ve accumulated enough points, you can use them to shop The Nature Exchange’s collection of natural items – each of them found in Alberta. Add something new and exciting to your home collection, like a small meteorite or even a amethyst stone!

    The Nature Exchange encourages you to explore your surroundings when you’re in nature, to find something cool that intrigues you – like tree bark or pine cones; the list goes on! – and return to The Nature Exchange again and again to share information and make trades. Find something you can’t remove from nature, like a bird's nest, eggs, or living plants? That’s okay! You can trade drawings, photographs, or field notes about your discoveries instead to earn points. So, what are you waiting for? Get outside in nature and go explore!

    Trading Desk Hours of Operations:

    • 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

    Beyond the Trading Centre

    The Nature Exchange gallery is a truly diverse experience, with an Animal Zone and the Field Station to discover. You can meet George and Badger, the sugar gliders; or Alphie, the corn snake, or even Shelob the tarantula! Next, participate in unique exhibits like identifying different trace evidence left behind by animals, or studying photographs taken at various Alberta Camera Traps. You can even use microscopes to study real samples, like compare carnivore teeth vs. herbivore teeth.

    At The Nature Exchange, you become real natural history researchers.

    The wilderness is at your doorstep!

    Indigenous Teachings

    Learn about the Indigenous culture through daily hands on crafts and teachings from a Land Based Navigator and Indigenous Education Specialist in our Northern Lights Indigenous Cultural Space located right inside The Nature Exchange Gallery.

  • The Nature Exchange is a learning experience unlike any other. Students become natural history researchers as they catalogue, interpret, analyze, interact and get hands-on with unique aspects of the gallery.

    Students can:

    • Meet our animals at the Animal Zone and discover what makes each creature special.
    • Trade natural items at the Field Station and learn all about each one.
    • Use real microscopes and other scientific tools to make observations, just like real scientists do.

    Make the most of your class visit to The Nature Exchange by visiting in smaller groups throughout the day.

    Best Curriculum Fit:

    Grade 1:

    • Topic D: Senses
    • Topic E: Needs of Animals and Plants

    Grade 2:

    • Topic E: Small Crawling and Flying Animals

    Grade 3:

    • Topic A: Rocks and Minerals
    • Topic E: Animal Life Cycles

    Grade 4:

    • Topic E: Plant Growth and Changes

    Grade 7:

    • Topic A: Interactions and Ecosystems

    Grade 9:

    • Topic A: Biological Diversity

The Nature Exchange

All Ages

Included with public Science Centre Admission / School rates apply

The Nature Exchange

All Ages

Included with public Science Centre Admission / School rates apply

The Nature Exchange

All Ages

Included with public Science Centre Admission / School rates apply


Have questions about what is allowed and not allowed to be traded? Check out this section for our most common questions.

1. What can I bring in to trade?

The Trading Centre supports 'leave no trace' collecting. Trading a drawing, written story, thoughtful field notes, or your knowledge about something natural is worth as many points as the object itself.

Anything found in nature could be the subject of a trade; drawings of animals, notes about a forest, pine cones you found under a tree, or even an art project about a thunder storm.

Sharing your knowledge or participation in a Citizen Science project can also be traded for points.

Remember that you can only trade 1 of each item. Items must be legally and ethically collected.

2. Is there anything that I’m not allowed to trade?

The following items cannot be traded:

  • man-made items
  • animals (living or dead)
    • bugs that die naturally can be traded
  • bones and antlers
  • nests, feathers, and eggs
  • things that are protected or endangered
  • historical objects (eg. arrow heads)

3. Can I collect items to trade in Coronation Park?

No. If all of our guests collect items from our backyard it would be devastating to the park.

However, you can make drawings and field notes of things that you find in the park to trade in.

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